What's In a Name?

Being a first grade teacher for the past 3 years, moving back to Kindergarten was quite a shock to me.  I had gotten used to the independence that first graders have:  Little things like knowing how to walk in a straight line and write their own names- skills that most of my Kindergarteners don't have coming into school!   Even though I knew what I was getting myself into, I really forgot what I was getting myself into!

So we have hit the ground running with our students!  We have been doing lots of activities to help our students learn their names.  I have some students who can't even recognize their own name, so working with our names and the letters in them is so important!

We did a few fun art activities where the students had to decorate their names with different items.  We did both torn paper names and Bingo dauber names.

The torn paper names helped us see who was able to tear the paper (a few of them couldn't!), who could follow directions, and who could trace their names.  They turned out really cute. 

We also used Bingo daubers to stamp our names.  These also turned out really cute.  We had to practice with the Bingo daubers on a scrap piece of paper before we started stamping on our papers.  Doing that really helped the kids learn how to use them so they didn't mess up their white papers!

They turned out really cute!

We also did some other activities with our names and with letters.  

We did a capital/lowercase letter sort.

We did a "Letters In My Name/Letters In My Friend's Name" activity.

We did name puzzles and counted the number of letters in our names.

We also sorted the letters in our names and the letters that weren't in our names.  It was very interesting to see who knew the letters in their names versus the letters that weren't in their names.  Some of my students were very confident, while others really had no idea.  We've definitely got our work cut out for us this year- but I know we will get there!

We also made these cute name trees.  I don't know where the template for this came from, but it would be super easy to make your own!

 One of the last name activities we did was decorate the beginning letter of our first names with something that begins with that letter.  They turned out really cute- except one of my kiddos, whose name starts with a J, had to redo her letter because the jellybeans we put on her J got super gross and then fell off!  But the kids really loved decorating their letters, and they looked adorable when I hung them up.

One of my parents from last year gave me about 6 of these palm trees, so I decided to use it for my Chicka Chicka Boom Boom tree.  It looked adorable with their letters on it!

Do you have students who are struggling with their names?  I put together some of these name activities and they are available in my TPT store.

I included the Name Sorts (Letters in My Name and Letters in My Name/Letters in a Friend's Name), Name Puzzles, Counting the Letters in My Name Activity, and the Decorate a Letter activity, complete with ideas for decorating your letters and the templates for all 26 letters of the alphabet.  Sorry, the "coconut tree" isn't included!  If you're interested, you can check it out by clicking on the picture!

What are some fun things you do to help your students learn their names?